It’s not you they are rejecting; it’s Me

And I said, “They rejected Jesus too.” And they said, “You’re not Him.” Bob Dylan

Fat Beggars School of Prophets

In the book of I Samuel, in chapter 8, we find the elders of the church coming to the prophet of God saying, appoint for us a charity system like the 501c3’s.  And the thing displeases the prophet who speaks to God about it, but God says, “Obey the elders; give them what they want.”

Then God tells the prophet, “It’s not you they are rejecting; it’s Me.”

What a fascinating notion!

The prophet as of yet says nothing to God about his own sense of rejection, but God addresses it outright and orders obedience to these wayward elders!

This is jacked up on so many levels.

The people of God do not need a charity system “like the 501c3’s” of those outside the Body of Christ.  That already makes NO SENSE.  Not for the body which walks those dusty Galilean trails pressed in on all sides and healing…

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Private Jets, Starving Children, and … the CHURCH

I’m a leaving, on a Jet Plane..don’t know when I’ll be back again…

Fat Beggars School of Prophets

Here is a framework for the worldview in which I operate:

In this world which YHWH, the creator God of Israel, made in his infinite LOVE and WISDOM, and in which the human creatures in particular are made to bear his image (represent him), when I see ANYONE owning, using, and keeping a private jet WHILE ANY child ANYWHERE in God’s creation is known to suffer hunger, then those private-jet people are very selfish, self-centered, and egocentric and thus do not bear God’s image insofar as they keep those jets.

It practically goes without saying.

If we ALL shared those jets, then this argument would not hold up.  But the fact that they are private, particularly, makes them problematic.

These are markers, in my worldview, of the edges of practically everything.  Let us situate ourselves IN THAT framework.  Where is the church in all this?

I don’t personally know any…

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Thinking In Terms of Spiritual Triage

How do you plea?

Fat Beggars School of Prophets

“Triage” is a medical term.  It has to do with making quick decisions about who will be saved and who will not.  It’s a rating system.  In an event with mass casualties, a doctor (or qualified medical personnel) will quickly pass through the mobs of needy people and bloody carnage, assessing and making snap judgments based on the level of need and the level of urgency.  If you are deemed “too far gone,” then you will be set aside, hopefully with pain management until you die, but, at that point, you are without hope of salvation.

I grew up watching the TV series M*A*S*H, and I recall how this process was portrayed.  Sometimes those snap judgements get second guessed, and sometimes those initially deemed beyond hope actually get saved.  Maybe we need to take a second look at our Spiritual Triage as a church today.

Now I am a grown…

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Competing On Your “Level” Playing Field

“For 2cents Plain” revisited. OR something like that, more or less.

Fat Beggars School of Prophets

I was drunk the day Mama got out of prison.  Drunk on Granddaddy’s bootleg stash.  I took my job and shoved it, joined 11 long-haired friends of Jesus on and chartreuse micro bus, and couldn’t keep a permanent address long enough to collect my welfare cash.

I’ve been arrested six times – 3 P.I.’s, a lude conduct, loitering, and another I can’t remember, but I’m pretty sure I didn’t do – but they called it prostitution.  I dropped out of school in the 10th grade, officially, but I haven’t seen the place since the eighth.  The thing I’m most proud of is the stuff I got away with, but I wouldn’t tell you about it and blow my cover unless we finished a very nice bottle of Scotch first.

I can pick a guitar, a little, and I can write a song or two, but I can’t sing; I ain’t…

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Why Are We Cruel to our Loved Ones?

Lily does it again and hammers in the Truth.

Retrospective Lily

Hi, friends. I know I take my loved ones for granted. How about you?

When People Create Their Own Misery

How many others have witnessed this scenario?

You’re in the company of a married couple or a child-parent pair. In conversation, a wife says something snide and cruel about her husband, and you instantly feel a pang of pity for both of them. Or a parent says or asks something pretty innocuous, and the child snaps back in an unnecessarily harsh way. Again, you feel the pang of pity.

Watching these scenarios is tough (especially in one’s own family). I want to shake the one who’s being cruel and ask, “Why do you act this way? Why do you delight in tearing this person down?”

I observe the facial expression of the one torn down, and when they look dejected, I just want to wrap them in a hug…

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What an aroma to our nose. Wait a minute, that smell just isn’t good.

Fat Beggars School of Prophets

*   I have contemplated writing this post a long time, yet never have found a way of addressing it that actually satisfies.  Notice: I use an asterisk in the title of this post.  Nevertheless, I strongly doubt the meaning or the sentiment is censored.  The offense is seething loud and clear behind that stupid little*“!

Okay, so here’s what’s up:

I live in a very nice, white, middle-class neighborhood in a very conservative and “Christian” town.  My neighborhood is not the most upper of crust, but it is a well established area with fine homes which I presume play host to Jesus in our hearts.  (At least that is the vibe I thought I was sensing when we purchased here.)

Shortly after moving here, our nation endured the presidential election of 2016 which proved to be an upset defeat for Hillary Clinton.  My neighborhood, that year…

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On Their Level

I am glad i’m not like those bums over there.

The Journey

Recently a church youth group was on a wilderness back-packing expedition and got lost. It was supposed to be a half-day trip, so they soon ran out of water in the Texas heat. One boy especially became dehydrated and seriously ill. Another hiked miles to get help, then hiked back with rescue team to show them the location. A helicopter came and took him and this now seriously ill friend to a hospital over 100 miles away. The other hikers were provided supplies and were eventually trucked out. Fortunately, the rescue was in time – the young man’s life was saved.

Nice story, so far. Right? Here is where it gets dicey. Our young hero is now in the hospital waiting room. He calls home to bring mom and dad up to date. So far so good. The boy continues his vigil, but soon realizes a predicament – he has…

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What Does It Profit A Nation To Gain The Whole World And Forfeit Its Soul?

Throw the bum out and leave him there. Wait a minute. That person happens to be ME.

Fat Beggars School of Prophets

The problems of poverty and homelessness are “intractable” and complex.  However, in American culture, it is easy to blame the poor for their own problems and thus to be overly simplistic and uncaring.  “These people” lack discipline, delayed gratification, job skills/education, work ethic, and so forth on the one hand, but on the other, “these people” struggle with alcohol and drug addiction and mental illness.

No doubt such observations are true.  Any and all are common – even major – contributing factors to poverty and homelessness in our culture.  However, very quietly, bubbling up at the edges of popular analysis, I find a concern for “networks of support.”  People living on the street suffer the loss of “networks of support” which put them there, networks which enable (empower, if you don’t like my use of “enable”) them to overcome any of these other contributing factors.

Got a debilitating drug addiction? …

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